At Smolarek Law, we have reviewed and drafted thousands of Wills for individuals and families. A Last Will and Testament (also known simply as a “Will”) is a legal document that states a person’s directions regarding the disposition of his or her estate. A Will is basically a roadmap through the probate process.
Conveniently located in Elma, New York, our experienced will attorney has served clients in need of new or updated Wills throughout the Buffalo, Orchard Park, Cheektowaga, Lancaster, and West Seneca, NY area.
In a Will, you have the ability to specify how you want your estate to be distributed. For example, you may divide your estate among several people equally, give everything to one individual, or name a charity as one of your beneficiaries. In addition, you may name in your Will the person(s) who will oversee your estate, usually called the Executor. This is the person who will be given the authority to gather all of your assets and debts, pay your creditors and distribute your assets according to the terms stated in your Will.
Having a Will makes sense. If you die without a Will, you are said to have died “intestate.” This means that your property would be distributed under New York State intestate succession law. The state statute may distribute your property in a way that you might not want. Rather than having your Executor be in charge of your estate, if you pass away without a Will, an Administrator needs to be appointed. If you do not have a Will and die without any relatives who are residents of New York, the County Public Administrator may need to be appointed to administer your estate instead of your family.
Another advantage of having a Will concerns minor children. If you have a young family and have minor children under the age of 18, you may state in your Will who you prefer to be the guardians of your minor children in the event of your death. A Will can also have additional benefits if you have a disabled dependent and may include a supplemental needs trust.
Lastly, a Will is typically much less expensive compared to drafting a living trust.
Having a dependable Last Will and Testament is one of the most important things you can do for your family. To ensure that your property is distributed in the manner you would like, please contact the will attorney at Smolarek Law at (716) 771-1601 to schedule a consultation.